003: under [garage] door shelving cabinet #1: A simple carcase

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Blog entry by Gary Fixler posted 06-10-2009 01:15 PM 3029 reads 0 times favorited 5 comments Add to Favorites Watch
no previous part Part 1 of 003: under [garage] door shelving cabinet series Part 2: Time lapse panel work »

I’m still hunting for space to end the clutter in my 1-car garage shop. I found some when I moved part of the PVC ductwork from my dust collector a bit so I could open the overhead garage door again. In that space, between the dust collector (and its separator can), hoses and dust collection accessories, and the path traveled by the opening garage door was a location about 2’ wide by 32” high – small cabinet size!

space in which to build a cabinet

Note the > marks on the wall, tracings of the door’s corner in various positions to outline its travel path:

space in which to build a cabinet

I want to store all the flat kit things like these that are always being moved around, in my way:

example of what I'll store in the new cabinet

Joinery was simple pocket hole work on the outsides of the top and bottom panels, with a back glued on. This is all scrap baltic birch that’s been sitting in my storage shed. None of the scraps were large enough to cover the back, so I used 2 equal-sized cutoffs at the top and bottom edges. I’m having fun using up scrap material for things lately, as I’ve collected quite a bit this past year. There was a ~3” space between the panels, so I cut a piece of the same stock scrap to fit snugly between them. That’s what’s being glued in in this shot:

gluing on the last back piece

I’m a little disappointed in myself for going with 4 drilled holes and toggle bolts to hang it (a chore in itself!), as it means when I need to move it someday, I’ll have to empty it, take out the shelves, remove the bolts – losing the springy bits in the process – and then go through that again to rehang it. I wish I’d gone with a french cleat system. Then I could just lift it free, put it in my truck, full of its wares, and drive it to my next home whenever I move. Maybe I’ll update it one of these days. Good enough for now :)

cabinet hung on the wall

It’s certainly full on that section of wall now! I also used my laminate trimmer to rout some grooves for adjustable shelf standards. I went tangent to the inside edge lines of the top and bottom panels – i.e. not routed all the way to the ends. Then I chiseled the grooves square, tin-snipped some leftover adjustable shelf standards to length, and dropped them in, flush with the sides.

There’s clearance for the dust collector’s motor’s intake, though I can always roll that side out from the wall a few inches.

dust collector motor intake has clearance

Next up, some shelves.

-- Gary, Los Angeles, video game animator

5 comments so far

View Scott Bryan's profile

Scott Bryan

27249 posts in 4906 days

#1 posted 06-10-2009 01:21 PM

That is a nice addition to your shop, Gary. Those of us with smaller shops have to utilize every nook and cranny available in or der to get all of our “stuff” in there. :)

-- Challenges are what make life interesting; overcoming them is what makes life meaningful- Joshua Marine

View lew's profile


13357 posts in 4840 days

#2 posted 06-10-2009 02:25 PM

Great Idea, Gary!

As Scott said, small shops need to use every inch of space. I know my shop has walls, but I can no longer see them!!

-- Lew- Time traveler. Purveyor of the Universe's finest custom rolling pins.

View TopamaxSurvivor's profile


20871 posts in 4760 days

#3 posted 06-10-2009 11:57 PM

I wish i could walk through mine, then I could clean it out :-))

-- Bob in WW ~ "some old things are lovely, warm still with life ... of the forgotten men who made them." - D.H. Lawrence

View a1Jim's profile


118162 posts in 4661 days

#4 posted 06-11-2009 12:00 AM

View Gary Fixler's profile

Gary Fixler

1001 posts in 4466 days

#5 posted 06-11-2009 06:33 AM

Scott – Thank you! I’m back and forth on the whole issue. I’m happy when I find a spot I can turn into a storage location, or figure out some new way to collapse things to fit somewhere, but at the same time, I should probably devote energy to finding and buying a place with a very large workshop, instead of spending all my effort and money souping up a 1-car freestanding garage outside my rental house. Too, all the time I’m building this stuff up to be able to work in the first place is time I’m not spending building things I’ve wanted to make, and when I move, it means a ton more hassle taking it all down and transporting, which will probably lead to me paying rent (or rent + house payment) for a month to give me enough time to disassemble and move everything, which means more money and time wasted, which means less for those pesky projects I can’t seem to get back to. I suppose most of us have these little dilemmas :)

lew – I’m gettin’ there!

Topamax – ha! I was there not long ago. It was like living inside the game Traffic Jam

Jim – sure will – thanks!

-- Gary, Los Angeles, video game animator

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